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review 2018-08-07 10:57
Kresse trifft Rapunzel
Cress - Marissa Meyer

Eines der Hauptthemen in Marissa Meyers „Lunar Chronicles“ ist die Freundschaft zwischen den Protagonistinnen. Ihre Beziehungen untereinander sind wesentlich wichtiger als ihre Romanzen. In diesem Punkt ließ sie sich von der Anime-Serie Sailor Moon inspirieren, in der weiblicher Zusammenhalt stets einen hohen Stellenwert einnahm. Die Parallelen zu Sailor Moon blieben den Fans der Science-Fiction-Reihe nicht verborgen. Kaiser Kai wird häufig mit Tuxedo Mask verglichen. Meyer selbst sieht sich als Sailor Merkur: eine ehrgeizige, neurotische Perfektionistin, die großen Wert auf Freundschaft legt und bemüht ist, das Richtige zu tun. Es überrascht mich daher nicht, dass sie sich am meisten mit der Hauptdarstellerin des dritten Bandes „Cress“ identifiziert: die scheue, hochintelligente Hackerin Cress, ihre Version von Rapunzel.

 

Als Cress Cinder warnte, beging sie Hochverrat. Sollte Herrin Sybil jemals herausfinden, was sie getan hat, erwartet sie der Tod. Trotz des immensen Risikos konnte sie einfach nicht länger tatenlos zusehen. Nach sieben einsamen Jahren der Gefangenschaft in einem Satelliten, nach zahllosen Stunden der Spionage, musste sie eingreifen, bevor Königin Levana ihre finsteren Pläne verwirklichen kann. Jetzt fürchtet sie die Besuche von Herrin Sybil mehr als je zuvor. Sie wird nicht ewig verbergen können, dass sie Cinder und ihren Freunden hilft. Glücklicherweise ist Cinders Schiff nur einen Katzensprung entfernt. Cress‘ Befreiung ist zum Greifen nah. Doch die Rettungsmission schlägt fehl. Der Satellit stürzt ab, während Cress und Carswell Thorne an Bord sind – mitten in die afrikanische Wüste, fern jeglicher Zivilisation. Cress und Thorne müssen Cinder und ihre Freunde so schnell wie möglich wiederfinden, wenn sie das Eastern Commonwealth rechtzeitig erreichen wollen, um die Hochzeit von Kaiser Kai und Königin Levana zu verhindern. Die Hochzeit, die sein Todesurteil wäre und das Schicksal der Erde besiegeln könnte…

 

Ich glaube, was mir an den „Lunar Chronicles“ am besten gefällt, ist das Wachstum der Geschichte. Mit jedem Band erweitert Marissa Meyer ihre Dimension zuverlässig, steckt kontrolliert neue Grenzen und etabliert neue Charaktere, Konflikte und Aspekte des Worldbuildings. Daher birgt jeder Band das Potential, mich zu überraschen – sowohl in sich selbst, als auch in seiner Funktion für die Reihe. Es ist eine wahre Freude, Meyers Ehrgeiz und ihre kreative Beweglichkeit zu beobachten. Nach den Abenteuern in „Cinder“ und „Scarlet“, die den Leser_innen Meyers Versionen von „Aschenputtel“ und „Rotkäppchen“ vorstellten, lernen wir nun im dritten Band „Cress“ ihr „Rapunzel“ kennen. Die Rahmenbedingungen der Adaption sind gewohnt futuristisch: Cress lebt seit ihrer Kindheit isoliert in einem Satelliten und späht für Königin Levana die politische Elite der Erde aus. Im Vergleich zu „Scarlet“ fand ich die Idiosynkrasien des Märchens in diesem Band hervorstechender und auffallender, weshalb mir die Adaption insgesamt gelungener erschien. Cress verkörpert Rapunzel überzeugend, da Meyer ihre Figur den Umständen ihres Aufwachsens entsprechend charakterisierte. Mit neun Jahren wurde sie aufgrund ihres Talents als trickreiche Hackerin in den Satelliten gesperrt. Seitdem hatte sie so gut wie keinen direkten Kontakt zu anderen Individuen. Ihre sozialen Kompetenzen sind unterentwickelt. Sie ist schüchtern, unsicher, naiv und flüchtet sich gern in Tagträume. Trotz ihrer extrem coolen Fähigkeiten, die das Vorurteil, Mädchen hätten keinen Draht zu Technik, Lügen strafen, erinnert sie stark an das klassische Fräulein in Nöten. Ich muss gestehen, dass ich deshalb so meine Schwierigkeiten mit Cress habe. Ich mag sie, aber sie ist einfach unfassbar süß, kein bisschen taff und schnell überfordert. Mir ist Cinder immer noch am liebsten, weil ich mich am besten mit ihrer pragmatischen und ernsthaften Art identifizieren kann. Nichtsdestotrotz fand ich, dass sich die bisher jüngste Protagonistin innerhalb der Handlung von „Cress“ gut schlägt, die jedoch leider erst auf den letzten 150 Seiten wirklich Fahrt aufnimmt und deren Struktur ein wenig unoriginell geriet. Meyer trennt ihre Figuren, was vermutlich der älteste Kniff der Welt ist, um Spannung aufzubauen. Cress steckt sie mit Thorne zusammen, wodurch er mehr Tiefe erhalten sollte. Für mich hat diese Strategie nicht so recht funktioniert, ich sehe ihn weiterhin als den zu gewollt witzigen Sidekick, der kaum etwas zur Geschichte beiträgt. Nach dem Absturz des Satelliten müssen sie sich zu zweit ohne Ausrüstung oder Verpflegung durch die Sahara kämpfen. Sie verbringen eine intensive Zeit miteinander, wodurch ihre Romanze bereits vorgezeichnet wirkt. Weiblicher Zusammenhalt hin oder her, offenbar braucht auch in den „Lunar Chronicles“ jede Prinzessin ihren Prinzen. Eben ganz im Stil der Märchen.

 

Meiner Meinung nach sind die „Lunar Chronicles“ besonders für junge Leserinnen ein gefundenes Fressen, weil sie so viele unterschiedliche Identifikationsmöglichkeiten bieten. Marissa Meyers Fokus auf weibliche Protagonistinnen, die nicht an omnipotente Superheldinnen erinnern, sondern durch ihre Stärken und Schwächen lebendig wirken, lädt herzlich zu der Überlegung ein, wem man denn nun am ähnlichsten ist: Cinder, Scarlet oder vielleicht doch eher der zarten Cress? Dank des für die Young Adult ungewöhnlich emanzipierten Frauenbildes begrüße ich den Hype um die Romane, obwohl für mich Marissa Meyer selbst der Star der Reihe ist. Der unermüdliche, logische Ausbau ihres Worldbuildings, mit dem sie auch im dritten Band „Cress“ punktet und die beeindruckende Leistung, verschiedene Märchen respektvoll zu einer individuellen und stimmigen Geschichte zu kombinieren, begeistert mich bisher mehr als jede der Figuren. Das könnte sich allerdings mit „Fairest“ ändern, in dem sie die Geschichte von Königin Levana offenbart. Ich hatte schon immer ein Herz für böse Königinnen

Source: wortmagieblog.wordpress.com/2018/08/07/marissa-meyer-cress
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review 2018-08-01 10:46
Trusting Cade (Custos Securities #1) by Luna David
Trusting Cade (Custos Securities #1) - Luna David,Book Cover by Design

Trusting Cade is the first book in the Custos Securities series, and also the first book by this author I have read.

 

We start off with Cade, who is feeling dissatisfied with his personal life. His best friend takes him to task, telling him he needs someone completely different from himself, and as luck would have it, fate drops someone into his lap (not literally!) Bradan is a diabetic runner and baker who is having stalking issues. His business partner is Cade's best friend's sister, so there you have the link. They have insta-lust, with promises of forever pretty much straight away. Bradan's stalker has other ideas though.

 

This was an easy, but long, read with no real surprises along the way. In some respects, although the storyline is full of hard issues, it was all too easy! Cade figures out who the stalker is immediately, although he isn't able to find him. As stated by other reviewers, some of the conversations are a bit stilted, and definitely don't sound like 'normal' conversations. However, as a first book, I found it to be enjoyable, and would definitely read more by this author.

 

* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and the comments here are my honest opinion. *

 

Merissa

Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!

Source: archaeolibrarian.wixsite.com/website/single-post/2018/07/31/Trusting-Cade-Custos-Securities-1-by-Luna-David
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text 2018-04-08 14:31
Reading progress update: I've read 22%.
Let Me In - Luna David

When the boy finally looked into his eyes, he blinked and shook his head slowly then opened his eyes again, as if not believing what he was seeing. He tried to speak but couldn’t, finally managing a whisper that Cash felt pierce his heart. That one word affecting him more than it ever had. The emotion of it, the sheer desperation of it, was almost his undoing.
“Daddy?”

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review 2018-04-07 16:27
Let Me In
Let Me In - Luna David

What a awesomely developed group of characters that I cannot wait to get more of.  I adored the leads in this and while some of the "Daddy/boy" kink is really not for me, this was done in such a way that it made complete sense and exactly what these characters need and want in a relationship.

 

I especially appreciated how this story started with 2 POV's and then one of these POV's changed to a third character. So different and yet such a great introduction to the dynamic which is this relationship.

 

I also very much appreciated that the typical "drama" that tends to land at 80% didn't. I mean it is there but it happens much soon and it landed where it made sense in the development of this couple.  It was heartbreaking (Luna style...*coughs Saving Sebastian*) and yet having both POV's once again brings forth such reasoning to both sides that you can't help but understand and love both characters even more.

 

The storyline with Liam's mother was really the only part that didn't work for me and it felt like it took up way too much of the story.  

 

But give me all these Daddies and their boys NOW.  Like NOW. I cannot wait to get the rest of this series.

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review 2018-03-18 15:00
Saving Sebastian
Saving Sebastian - Luna David

“You don’t have to prove yourself worthy of me. You are worthy of me, just as I’m worthy of you."

 

 

For me this was not simply about the acts of a BDSM relationship but was the complete development of a true D/s relationship and one that was done so with such depth, attention and patience.  The character development, including their doubts, hesitancy and questions revolving around their worth to their partner was beautifully captured.

 

While I have read several BDSM books, I have not always been comfortable reading about these types of relationships.  Perhaps it has been more about the acts before, or what I feel can be overly aggressive Dominates and quite weak submissives.  And that is awful to say and certainly is not meant in any way as demeaning but it was just not always something I understood.  There have been a few books however that explain better the power that the submissive holds…that they ultimately hold all the power with one simple word.  And out of all the books I have read involving BDSM, it is this one that I feel has captured the true nature of these relationships best.

 

This is not a quick read.  This is not a read in which involves only the acts, as the majority of the book is not about scenes but about the interactions, the trust building, and the dynamics and ultimate ability to know your partner, their needs and their desires. 

 

I also honestly never before got the level of worshipping that a Dom can have toward their sub.  But this aspect made all the difference for me.  Gideon, while Dominate, is so enthralled by His Boy, so utterly devoted to him, that it was seeing his sheer love expressed in a look, in a gesture or in his thoughts and actions that made me all the more captivated by him.  And it was these moments which made their dynamic stronger for me as partners.

 

“You keep getting on your knees for me.” He sighed and glanced back down at the box. “It feels wrong.”

“Why? Because you’re convinced that as my sub you should always be below me?”

Sebastian shrugged. “Yeah. I mean, I’m serving you, not the other way around.”

“You don’t think I do the same for you?”

 Sebastian tilted his head in confusion and shook his head. “You should never serve me.”

Gideon chuckled at that and said, “Of course I should. We’re serving each other. We just do it in different ways. You’re offering your service to me as my submissive. But I’m also offering my service to you as your Dominant. We’re equals in this, Sebastian.”

“You really believe that?”

“Fuck yes! I absolutely do. I can do nothing with you, to you, unless you have given your express permission. That power is in your hands. You know this.”

Sebastian nodded. “Yeah. I mean, I guess. I just never thought of it that way. That doesn’t seem right.”

“I’m giving you what you need, just as you are doing for me. If that isn’t service, I don’t know what is.”

 

While this book is long, it is not without reason.  Every scene in some way has a point, shows the true character of our main MCs and therefore nothing ever seemed pointless.  Even the scene with Boone and Connell had value and was so damn perfect at capturing the nurturing aspect of Gideon.    

 

 

 

The rope scenes for me were so intricate in their descriptions that I longed to have the imagery from Khaleo’s camera…not only in scene but in aftercare as well.  The images of the marks and indentions left in the skin, just beautiful crafted.

 

“Look at the lines on your body caused by the ropes. They’re beautiful. You’re beautiful."

 

Luna David, I have to say, not only impressed me with her in depth exploration into BDSM but into the health conditions that our sweet Sebastian lives with.  I felt this part of the story to be well researched and thoughtful.  While I am not a physician, it all felt quite accurate and ultimately personal. 

 

 

The story telling aspect of this also worked well for me.  While much of the story is a back and forth POV, there are several key scenes which are told from both POV and it was those that became the most touching of the story.  The New Year’s Eve scene being the most heartbreaking of them all.  I also enjoyed that while at times, it seemed certain scenes were skipped, we later got these told in memories, which I loved.  I am not sure this book would have worked had only one POV been described.  This was a couple and therefore their thoughts, actions and love for the other were of utmost importance in making this successful.

 

Now, I did not read the first 2 books in this series…honestly after hearing the praises surrounding this book and in seeing the cover, there was just no way I could wait.  And while a standalone, part of me does wish I had read the others first.  I was a little confused during the first hospital scene, feeling as though I walked into a family dinner not knowing who was there or what their relationships entailed.  I also feel like I may have gotten some inkling into what Sebastian looked like, having perhaps gotten other's perspectives on this man in previous books.  So again, while it really didn’t matter as this couple goes, it kinda mattered to me.  I will go back and read the others if for no other reason than to see sweet Braden’s story.  He was such a loving spirit and friend and I need more of him.

 

I do hope we eventually get Killian’s story.  He popped on page only briefly but there is no doubt a story behind this intriguing man.  And while I am no longer a big reader of M/F, I would read Finn and Zoe’s story.  How this doctor came to embrace this lifestyle to be what he needed for the woman he loves. I am on board.

 

There are so many aspects of this story that I have failed to even acknowledge, from their backgrounds, to their families, to the tattoos and Sebastian's love of art, and pets, every aspect was so beautifully and amazingly crafted.  I guess I will just have to reread this at some point and expand on those elements as well.  Until then, I cannot recommend this journey enough.

 

 

Spoilerish Bonus Quote…read at own risk…but it is absolutely beautiful.

 

Gideon leaned down and kissed his head, over and over, everywhere he could reach, paying particular attention to the raised, bumpy edges of his scar. His boy’s sobs were wracking his whole body at that point and Gideon’s heart was breaking.

“You’re so good, baby. So strong. Let it out. I’m so fucking proud of you. So proud. You’re the bravest man I know.”

Gideon touched and stroked Sebastian’s face, his head, his shoulders, and his neck, telling him how beautiful he was, how he’d never been more attracted to anyone in his life, how proud he was to be with him, and finally how lucky he knew he was that Sebastian had chosen him.

 

***

Even better the second time around. ❤️❤️❤️

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